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The Promises of God

By Keith Roland

 

I. Promises about Kingdom of Christ

Dan 2:44-45

And in the days of these kings the God of heaven will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed; and the kingdom shall not be left to other people; it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms, and it shall stand forever. 45 Inasmuch as you saw that the stone was cut out of the mountain without hands, and that it broke in pieces the iron, the bronze, the clay, the silver, and the gold — the great God has made known to the king what will come to pass after this. The dream is certain, and its interpretation is sure.”

 

“forever

OT:5957

alam (Aramaic) (aw-lam’); corresponding to OT:5769; remote time, i.e. the future or past indefinitely; often adverb, forever:

KJV – for ([n-]) ever (lasting), old.

Isa 9:6-7

6 For unto us a Child is born, Unto us a Son is given; And the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end, Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, To order it and establish it with judgment and justice From that time forward, even forever. The zeal of the Lord of hosts will perform this.

Now we all agree that this is the kingdom of Christ –that it will last forever. But look at verse 7 “increase”

Isa 9:7

7 Of the increase of His government and peace There will be no end, Upon the throne of David and over His kingdom, To order it and establish it with judgment and justice From that time forward, even forever.

Not only is the kingdom going to last forever, it will continually increase. If as we have always been taught that the earth is destroyed, time is no more, and people are not being born , how can the kingdom increase? It cannot!

 

II. Promises of the earth being forever

Ps 89:34-37

34 My covenant I will not break, Nor alter the word that has gone out of My lips. 35 Once I have sworn by My holiness; I will not lie to David: 36 His seed shall endure forever, And his throne as the sun before Me; 37 It shall be established forever like the moon, Even like the faithful witness in the sky.”

Again the promise that the kingdom of Christ will “endure forever” But look how he states it will be forever, he compares it to the sun and the moon. So if the kingdom is forever then the sun and moon must be forever!

Eccl 1:4-9

4 One generation passes away, and another generation comes; But the earth abides forever. 5 The sun also rises, and the sun goes down, And hastens to the place where it arose. 6 The wind goes toward the south, And turns around to the north; The wind whirls about continually, And comes again on its circuit. 7 All the rivers run into the sea, Yet the sea is not full; To the place from which the rivers come, There they return again. 8 All things are full of labor; Man cannot express it. The eye is not satisfied with seeing, Nor the ear filled with hearing. 9 That which has been is what will be, That which is done is what will be done, And there is nothing new under the sun.

Gen 8:21-22

21 And the LORD smelled a soothing aroma. Then the LORD said in His heart, “I will never again curse the ground for man’s sake, although the imagination of man’s heart is evil from his youth; nor will I again destroy every living thing as I have done. 22 “While the earth remains, Seedtime and harvest, Cold and heat, Winter and summer, And day and night Shall not cease.”

If God is planning to destroy the whole earth with fire, don’t you think that would be a curse of the ground ? Don’t you think every living thing would be destroyed?

“while the earth remains”

OT:3117

yowm (yome); from an unused root meaning to be hot; a day (as the warm hours), whether literal (from sunrise to sunset, or from one sunset to the next), or figurative (a space of time defined by an associated term), [often used adverb]:

KJV – age, always, chronicals, continually (-ance), daily, ([birth-], each, to) day, (now a, two) days (agone), elder, end, evening, (for) ever (-lasting, -more), full, life, as (so) long as (… live), (even) now, old, outlived, perpetually, presently, remaineth, required, season, since, space, then, (process of) time, as at other times, in trouble, weather, (as) when, (a, the, within a) while (that), whole (+age), (full) year (-ly), younger.

If it had been translated “while the earth from sunrise to sunset”, there would not be any difficulty understanding that there is no limit.

Ps 104:5

5 You who laid the foundations of the earth, So that it should not be moved forever,

Ps 119:90-91

90 Your faithfulness endures to all generations; You established the earth, and it abides.

Ps 148:1-6

Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD from the heavens; Praise Him in the heights! 2 Praise Him, all His angels; Praise Him, all His hosts! 3 Praise Him, sun and moon; Praise Him, all you stars of light! 4 Praise Him, you heavens of heavens, And you waters above the heavens! 5 Let them praise the name of the LORD, For He commanded and they were created. 6 He also established them forever and ever; He made a decree which shall not pass away. 91 They continue this day according to Your ordinances, For all are Your servants.

 

III. Figurative judgment language

 

A. “Sun, moon, stars”

Gen 37:9-11

9 Then he dreamed still another dream and told it to his brothers, and said, “Look, I have dreamed another dream. And this time, the sun, the moon, and the eleven stars bowed down to me.” 10 So he told it to his father and his brothers; and his father rebuked him and said to him, “What is this dream that you have dreamed? Shall your mother and I and your brothers indeed come to bow down to the earth before you?” 11 And his brothers envied him, but his father kept the matter in mind.

They understood this to be figurative and it is used throughout the bible representing the rulers.

Isa 13:10

10 For the stars of heaven and their constellations Will not give their light; The sun will be darkened in its going forth, And the moon will not cause its light to shine.

The context here is regarding the judgment on Babylon

Ezek 32:7-8

7 When I put out your light ,I will cover the heavens, and make its stars dark; I will cover the sun with a cloud, And the moon shall not give her light. 8 All the bright lights of the heavens I will make dark over you, And bring darkness upon your land,’ Says the Lord GOD.

This is in regards to prophecy against Egypt

Joel 3:15-16

15 The sun and moon will grow dark, And the stars will diminish their brightness. 16 The LORD also will roar from Zion, And utter His voice from Jerusalem; The heavens and earth will shake; But the LORD will be a shelter for His people, And the strength of the children of Israel.

Prophecy against Jerusalem

Matt 24:29-35

“Immediately after the tribulation of those days the sun will be darkened, and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven, and the powers of the heavens will be shaken. 30 Then the sign of the Son of Man will appear in heaven, and then all the tribes of the earth will mourn, and they will see the Son of Man coming on the clouds of heaven with power and great glory. 31 And He will send His angels with a great sound of a trumpet, and they will gather together His elect from the four winds, from one end of heaven to the other. 32 “Now learn this parable from the fig tree: When its branch has already become tender and puts forth leaves, you know that summer is near. 33 So you also, when you see all these things, know that it is near — at the doors! 34 Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place. 35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.

The destruction of Jerusalem would occur in that generation.

 

B. “Heaven and earth”

Ps 18:7

7 Then the earth shook and trembled; The foundations of the hills also quaked and were shaken, Because He was angry.

The context here was when David was being pursued by Saul

Ps 46:6

6 The nations raged, the kingdoms were moved; He uttered His voice, the earth melted.

By the sons of Korah speaking of God’s deliverance

Isa 13:13

13 Therefore I will shake the heavens, And the earth will move out of her place, In the wrath of the LORD of hosts And in the day of His fierce anger.

God’s punishment of Babylon

Isa 24:1-6

Behold, the LORD makes the earth empty and makes it waste, Distorts its surface And scatters abroad its inhabitants. 2 And it shall be: As with the people, so with the priest; As with the servant, so with his master; As with the maid, so with her mistress; As with the buyer, so with the seller; As with the lender, so with the borrower; As with the creditor, so with the debtor. 3 The land shall be entirely emptied and utterly plundered, For the LORD has spoken this word. 4 The earth mourns and fades away, The world languishes and fades away; The haughty people of the earth languish. 5 The earth is also defiled under its inhabitants, Because they have transgressed the laws, Changed the ordinance, Broken the everlasting covenant. 6 Therefore the curse has devoured the earth, And those who dwell in it are desolate. Therefore the inhabitants of the earth are burned, And few men are left.

God’s punishment on Tyre

Joel 3:16

16 The LORD also will roar from Zion, And utter His voice from Jerusalem; The heavens and earth will shake;

Judgment on Jerusalem

Hag 2:21-22

21 “Speak to Zerubbabel, governor of Judah, saying: ‘I will shake heaven and earth. 22 I will overthrow the throne of kingdoms; I will destroy the strength of the Gentile kingdoms. I will overthrow the chariots And those who ride in them;

Now we understand that every single time these phrases were used that the physical earth was not destroyed, but when we get to the new testament people demand the same phrases to be literal!

Matt 5:18

18 For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.

If this is literal, then the law is still in effect, but if it refers to the Jewish temple then the law is no longer in effect.

Matt 24:34-35

34 Assuredly, I say to you, this generation will by no means pass away till all these things take place. 35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will by no means pass away.

If the literal heaven and earth is meant then it had to be destroyed in that generation.

Heb 12:25-29

See that you do not refuse Him who speaks. For if they did not escape who refused Him who spoke on earth, much more shall we not escape if we turn away from Him who speaks from heaven, 26 whose voice then shook the earth; but now He has promised, saying, “Yet once more I shake not only the earth, but also heaven.” 27 Now this, “Yet once more,” indicates the removal of those things that are being shaken, as of things that are made, that the things which cannot be shaken may remain. 28 Therefore, since we are receiving a kingdom which cannot be shaken, let us have grace, by which we may serve God acceptably with reverence and godly fear. 29 For our God is a consuming fire.

The Hebrew writer is using heaven and earth to represent the old law and its removal.

2 Peter 3:10-13

But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. 11 Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, 12 looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? 13 Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells.

This is the same language used in the old testament referring to God’s judgment and it never meant the literal heaven and earth. Let’s look at the word “elements”

NT:4747

stoicheion (stoy-khi’-on); neuter of a presumed derivative of the base of NT:4748; something orderly in arrangement, i.e. (by implication) a serial (basal, fundamental, initial) constituent (literally), proposition (figuratively) KJV – element, principle, rudiment.

Gal 4:3

3 Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the world.

Gal 4:9

9 But now after you have known God, or rather are known by God, how is it that you turn again to the weak and beggarly elements, to which you desire again to be in bondage?

Col 2:8

Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ.

Col 2:20-23

20 Therefore, if you died with Christ from the basic principles of the world, why, as though living in the world, do you subject yourselves to regulations — 21 “Do not touch, do not taste, do not handle,” 22 which all concern things which perish with the using — according to the commandments and doctrines of men?

Heb 5:12-13

For though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you again the first principles of the oracles of God; and you have come to need milk and not solid food.

In every single occasion the word is used, it refers to the old law! Now let’s look at the prophecy regarding the new heavens and earth.

Isa 65:17-18

“For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth; And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind. 18 But be glad and rejoice forever in what I create; For behold, I create Jerusalem as a rejoicing, And her people a joy.

The “new heaven and earth” is the “new Jerusalem”

Heb 12:22-24

22 But you have come to Mount Zion and to the city of the living God, the heavenly Jerusalem, to an innumerable company of angels, 23 to the general assembly and church of the firstborn who are registered in heaven, to God the Judge of all, to the spirits of just men made perfect, 24 to Jesus the Mediator of the new covenant, and to the blood of sprinkling that speaks better things than that of Abel.

Rev 3:11-12

11 Behold, I am coming quickly! Hold fast what you have, that no one may take your crown. 12 He who overcomes, I will make him a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall go out no more. I will write on him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which comes down out of heaven from My God. And I will write on him My new name.

Rev 21:1-2

Now I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away. Also there was no more sea. 2 Then I, John, saw the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

Notice that this is not heaven but comes down out of heaven!

 

IV. Conclusion

So if the physical earth is not going to be destroyed, now what?

2 Cor 5:10

10 For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may receive the things done in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.

Heb 9:27

27 And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment,

There is no waiting in Hades (now), but an immediate judgment and sentence.